In an op-ed published Tuesday, The New York Times liberal tech writer Kevin Roose suggested the government appoint a “reality czar” as part of an effort to allegedly combat “disinformation” and tamp down potential unrest.
“I worry that unless the Biden administration treats conspiracy theories and disinformation as the urgent threats they are, our parallel universes will only drift further apart, and the potential for violent unrest and civic dysfunction will only grow,” he wrote.
Roose claimed he spoke to a number of “experts” who seemed to agree something needed to be done by the new regime. Here’s just a bit of what he says he was told:
Joan Donovan, the research director of Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy, suggested that the Biden administration could set up a “truth commission,” similar to the 9/11 Commission, to investigate the planning and execution of the Capitol siege on Jan. 6. This effort, she said, would ideally be led by people with deep knowledge of the many “networked factions” that coordinated and carried out the riot, including white supremacist groups and far-right militias.
“There must be accountability for these actions,” Dr. Donovan said. “My fear is that we will get distracted as a society and focus too much on giving voice to the fringe groups that came out in droves for Trump.”
These experts were heartened that the Biden administration had already announced a “comprehensive threat assessment” of domestic extremism after the Capitol riots. But they cautioned that categorizing these extremists as “domestic terrorists” — while understandable, given the damage they’ve caused — could backfire. They noted that counterterrorism efforts had historically been used to justify expanding state power in ways that end up harming religious and ethnic minorities, and that today’s domestic extremism crisis didn’t map neatly onto older, more conventional types of terror threats.
And leading this effort would be something called a “reality czar.” Seriously. As though the American people needs someone to tell them what reality is:
Several experts I spoke with recommended that the Biden administration put together a cross-agency task force to tackle disinformation and domestic extremism, which would be led by something like a “reality czar.”
He admits the idea sounds, “a little dystopian…” Gee, you think? Welcome to “1984.”
And of course, this new regime would work closely with Big Tech, the cabal I have come to call the “Silicon Valley Axis of Evil.”
This task force could also meet regularly with tech platforms, and push for structural changes that could help those companies tackle their own extremism and misinformation problems. (For example, it could formulate “safe harbor” exemptions that would allow platforms to share data about QAnon and other conspiracy theory communities with researchers and government agencies without running afoul of privacy laws.) And it could become the tip of the spear for the federal government’s response to the reality crisis.
What could possibly go wrong?
Writing at Newsbusters, Alexander Hall notes:
Calls for Big Tech platforms to increase restrictions on political groups after the Capitol riot, rather than during the preceding summer of left-wing violence, speaks volumes. Facebook, for example, has refused to even acknowledge requests to remove reportedly violent groups such as Rose City Antifa that still are fully operational on Facebook with thousands of followers.
In other words, the very people who spent the last four years pushing one lie after another while enabling violent leftists and smearing conservatives as “Nazis,” “racists” or “white supremacists” could very well be part of a new regime telling you what is reality. Got it?
One person hit the nail square on the head:
— Privileged Route Faith Community ♻️🏳️🌈💰 (@PrivilegedRoute) February 2, 2021
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